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• • • Being a journal by artist and designer John Coulthart, cataloguing interests, obsessions and passing enthusiasms.

Archive for the ‘Owen Jones’ tag

 

Dolmetsch’s Ornamentenschatz

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If Racinet’s Polychromatic Ornament (1869–1873) was the French answer to The Grammar of Ornament (1856) by Owen Jones, then Heinrich Dolmetsch’s Der Ornamentenschatz (1887) is the German response to both, an equally lavish collection of colour plates showing ornamental decoration through the ages. Dolmetsch’s book follows the same chronological format as its counterparts, the main difference […]

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Racinet’s Polychromatic Ornament

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The publication of Owen Jones’ landmark volume, The Grammar of Ornament (1856), prompted decoration curators in other countries to try their hands at equally lavish collections of historic ornament. The first edition of Auguste Racinet’s L’Ornement Polychrome was published by Firmin-Didot from 1869–1873; a second edition appeared in 1885–1887. The plates here are from a […]

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Christopher Dresser’s Studies in Design

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The previous post about Christopher Dresser’s design studies proved popular so here’s another discovery from the same source. A surprise this time was seeing the middle motif on the page above; I have this separated from its neighbours in a collection of Art Nouveau graphics, and used it on the slipcase of a Cradle of […]

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Christopher Dresser’s Art of Decorative Design

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Studies of decorative design are numerous but this one stands out for the quality of its colour plates, all of which show a variety of designs derived from plants and flowers. The Art of Decorative Design (1862) is one of a number of design books published in the wake of the Great Exhibition of 1851, […]

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Kunstgewerbliche Schmuckformen für die Fläche

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Kunstgewerbliche Schmuckformen für die Fläche is another collection of decorative plates intended as a reference book for designers, and it’s proved its usefulness by providing me with a motif I can use in one of the things I’ve been working on this week. This book differs from others by being the first in a series […]

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Album de la décoration

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Plates from a selection of art nouveau-styled prints for the use of artists and craftsmen. There’s more in this incomplete Flickr set; a little searching turns up further examples but the Flickr ones are the highest quality. The Four Seasons were featured here several years ago in a post about illustrator Patten Wilson. The bat-obsessed […]

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The Grammar of Ornament revisited

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I’ve owned a facsimile of Owen Jones’ study of ornamental design for many years. Jones was an architect who helped in the planning of London’s Great Exhibition in 1851, and in the subsequent development of the Victoria & Albert Museum. The Grammar of Ornament (1856) originated from this work, a lavish guide to the history […]

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Dekorative Vorbilder

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Richard Kühnel. Some of the Art Nouveau plates from Dekorative Vorbilder, a series devoted to the decorative arts published in Germany from 1895 on. The interior design suggestion above has me wondering whether there’s ever been another period of design when it’s seemed quite natural (so to speak) to offer a giant insect and monstrous […]

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Weekend links 53

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Ancient Egyptian capitals from The Grammar of Ornament (1856) by Owen Jones at Egyptian Revival. • Golden Age Comic Book Stories has been pulling out all the stops recently with entries for Will Bradley, Alphonse Mucha’s Documents Decoratifs (a companion volume to Combinaisons Ornementales), and pages from My Name is Paris (1987) illustrated by Michael […]

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Styles of Ornament

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Pages from Styles of Ornament (1904), a collection of ornamental designs by Alexander Speltz. This is one of a great collection of books from the Digital Library for the Decorative Arts and Material Culture at the University of Wisconsin. I only found their collection today so I’ve yet to take a detailed look at the […]

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The Voynich Manuscript

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High-res scans of The Voynich Manuscript on Flickr. Via Boing Boing. Previously on { feuilleton } • The Codex Seraphinianus • 20 Sites n Years by Tom Phillips • The Grammar of Ornament by Owen Jones • Surrealist cartomancy • The Atlas Coelestis of Johann Gabriel Doppelmayr

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The Grammar of Ornament by Owen Jones

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Owen Jones’ landmark study of the world’s decorative history was published in 1856. I have a facsimile edition from the 1980s and it’s a beautiful volume even besides its value as a reference work. Now illuminated-books.com has made high-res scans of the pages available for free. They do the same for a number of other […]

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